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US National Team

Meet the US National Team

 

2008 US Paralympic Wheelchair Rugby Team Members
Player name Classification Number
Jason Regier 0.5 7
Scott Hogsett 1.0 8
Norm Lyduch 1.0 5
Andy Cohn 2.0 11
Will Groulx 2.0 10
Bryan Kirkland 2.0 4
Seth McBride 2.0 2
Nick Springer 2.0 9
Chance Sumner 3.0 1
Mark Zupan 3.0 3
Joel Wilmoth 3.5 6

 COACHING & SUPPORT STAFF:

Name Title/Role
1. GUMBERT, James Head Coach
2. SUHR, Ed Assistant Coach
3. CORNELIUS, Patty Team Leader
4. MURDOCK, Jim ATC
5. FRIERSON, Marty Equipment Manager
6. SCHWAN, Kelly PCA
7. MURRAY, Robert PCA

 

Jason Regier
JASON REGIER
Sport:  Wheelchair Rugby
Height:  5’10”
Weight:  140 lbs
DOB:  February 8, 1975
Birthplace:  Denver, Colorado
Current Residence:  Denver, Colorado
Classification:  0.5

Personal Profile:  

Jason Regier says that he is looking forward to the upcoming Paralympic Games in Beijing and hopes to be a valuable part of a potential gold-medal run.  This is the first Paralympic Games for Regier.

Regier has been playing rugby for the past 10 years. He was first introduced to the game while in rehab at Craig Hospital in Englewood, Colo. He began playing after meeting Brad Mickelson, founder of the Denver Highlanders (now the Denver Harlequins) at a Denver Broncos game. A year after the meeting, Regier tried out for the Highlanders and made the practice squad. After two years on the practice squad, he earned a position on the traveling team.

Regier says playing rugby has been the biggest influence in returning to an active lifestyle and recapturing life after his injury.

Major Achievements:

•    2008:  First place - Canada Cup, Burnaby, British Columbia
•    2008:  Second place - North American Cup, Birmingham, Alabama
•    2008:  USQRA Athlete of the Year
•    2007:  Nominated to 2008 U.S. Paralympic Wheelchair Rugby Team
•    2007:  U.S. Quad Rugby Association (USQRA) Division I National Championship, Denver Harlequins
•    2006:  Gold medal - World Wheelchair Rugby Championships, Christchurch, New Zealand
•    2006:  First place - Canada Cup, Vancouver, B.C., Canada
•    2006:  First place - North American Cup, Birmingham, Ala.
•    2005:  Gold medal - World Wheelchair Games, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
•    2005:  Selected to U.S. Wheelchair Rugby Development Team

 

 

Scott Hogsett

SCOTT HOGSETT
Sport: Wheelchair Rugby
Height:  6’1”
Weight:  155 lbs
DOB:  October 16, 1972
Birthplace:  Spokane, Washington
Current Residence:  Austin, Texas
Classification:  1.0

Personal Profile:  

Scott Hogsett, a member of the 2004 U.S. Paralympic Wheelchair Rugby Team, says that this year's team is very strong and he hopes they can continue into Beijing and bring home a gold medal for the U.S.

Hogsett has been playing wheelchair rugby for 12 years. Currently, he plays for the Texas Stampede (Austin, Texas) and helped lead the team to the U.S. Quad Rugby Association Division I National Championship in 2008.

Hogsett's a full-time athlete, but also spends time as a motivational speaker for The Hartford. In the past, he filled the roles of both player and coach for the Phoenix Heat, who finished 36-1 in 2006 on their way to a national championship. Hogsett was featured in the Academy Award nominated documentary "Murderball."


Major Achievements:

•    2008:  First place - Canada Cup, Burnaby, British Columbia  
•    2008:  Second place - North American Cup, Birmingham, Alabama  
•    2008:  U.S. Quad Rugby Association National Championship - Texas Stampede  
•    2007:  Nominated to 2008 U.S Paralympic Wheelchair Rugby Team
•    2006:  Gold medal - World Wheelchair Rugby Championships, Christchurch, New Zealand
•    2006:  First place - Canada Cup, Vancouver, B.C., Canada
•    2006:  First place - North American Cup, Birmingham, Ala.
•    2006:  USQRA Division I National Championship, Phoenix Heat
•    2004:  Bronze medal - Paralympic Games, Athens, Greece

 

Norm Lyduch
NORM LYDUCH
Sport: Wheelchair Rugby
Height:  6’
Weight:  140 lbs
DOB:  July 4, 1972
Birthplace:  Chicago, Illinois
Current Residence:  Austin, Texas
Classification:  1.0

Personal Profile:  

Norm Lyduch, already a three-time Paralympian (1996 - track & field; 2000, 2004 - wheelchair rugby), will look to help the U.S. Paralympic Wheelchair Rugby Team return to the top of the Paralympic Games medals podium in 2008.

He was first introduced to wheelchair rugby while attending the University of Illinois when he was 18 years old. He describes the game as "awesome" and "hard-hitting."

Major Achievements:

•    2008: First place - Canada Cup, Burnaby, British Columbia  
•    2008: Second place - North American Cup, Birmingham, Alabama  
•    2008: U.S. Quad Rugby Association Division I National Championship - Texas Stampede
•    2007:  Nominated to 2008 U.S Paralympic Wheelchair Rugby Team
•    2006:  Gold medal - World Wheelchair Rugby Championships, Christchurch, New Zealand
•    2006:  First place - Canada Cup, Vancouver, B.C., Canada
•    2006:  First place - North American Cup, Birmingham, Ala.
•    2005:  USQRA Athlete of the Year
•    2005:  USQRA Division I National Championship, Texas Stampede
•    2004:  USQRA Division I National Championship, Texas Stampede
•    2004:  Bronze medal - Paralympic Games, Athens, Greece
•    2002:  Silver medal - IWRF World Championships, Gothenburg, Sweden
•    2000:  Gold medal - Paralympic Games, Sydney, Australia
•    1998:  Gold medal - World Championships, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
•    1996:  Member of U.S. Paralympic Team

  

Andy Cohn

ANDY COHN
Sport: Wheelchair Rugby
Height:  6’
Weight:  145 lbs
DOB:  February 3, 1978
Birthplace:  Mesa, Arizona
Current Residence:  Tempe, Arizona
Disability:  Quadriplegic

Personal Profile:  

Andy Cohn will represent the U.S. for the second time at the 2008 Paralympic Games in Beijing. He was a member of the team that won bronze in Athens in 2004.

Cohn began playing wheelchair rugby in 1997 and has become a fixture on the U.S. Paralympics Wheelchair Rugby National Team over the past several years. The Arizona State University (ASU) alumnus is one of the athletes featured in the Academy Award nominated documentary "Murderball."

Cohn graduated from ASU with a Bachelor's degree in English.

Major Achievements:

•    2008:  First place - Canada Cup, Burnaby, British Columbia  
•    2008:  Second place - North American Cup, Birmingham, Alabama  
•    2007:  Nominated to 2008 U.S. Paralympic Wheelchair Rugby Team
•    2006:  Gold medal - World Wheelchair Rugby Championships, Christchurch, New Zealand
•    2006:  First place - Canada Cup, Vancouver, B.C., Canada
•    2006:  First place - North American Cup, Birmingham, Ala.
•    2006:  USQRA Division I National Championship, Phoenix Heat
•    2004:  Bronze medal - Paralympic Games, Athens, Greece
•    2002:  Silver medal - IWRF World Championships, Gothenburg, Sweden
•    2002:  U.S. Quad Rugby Association Athlete of the Year

 

Will Groulx

WILL GROULX
Sport: Wheelchair Rugby
Height:  6’2”
Weight:  145 lbs
DOB:  March 11, 1974
Birthplace:  Taejon, Korea
Current Residence:  Portland, Oregon
Classification:  2.0

Personal Profile:  

School:  University of Tennessee
U.S. Quad Rugby Association (USQRA) Team:  Portland Pounders

Will Groulx will be competing in his second Paralympic Games when he heads to Beijing in 2008. He says he hopes for continued success for the U.S. Wheelchair Rugby Team and, of course, to bring home a gold medal.

Groulx began playing wheelchair rugby in September of 2001 and found himself on the bronze medal-winning U.S. Paralympic Wheelchair Rugby Team three years later. He served in the U.S. Navy from 1995-2001, and was medically discharged after suffering a spinal cord injury.


Major Achievements:

•    2008:  First place - Canada Cup, Burnaby, British Columbia  
•    2008:  Second place - North American Cup, Birmingham, Alabama  
•    2007:  Nominated to 2008 U.S. Paralympic Wheelchair Rugby Team
•    2006:  Gold medal - World Wheelchair Rugby Championships, Christchurch, New Zealand
•    2006:  First place - Canada Cup, Vancouver, B.C., Canada
•    2006:  First place - North American Cup, Birmingham, Ala.
•    2004:  Bronze medal - Paralympic Games, Athens, Greece

 

Bryan Kirkland
BRYAN KIRKLAND
Sport: Wheelchair Rugby
Height: 6’5”
Weight: 170 lbs
DOB: August 18, 1971
Birthplace: Oneonta, Alabama
Current Residence: Leeds, Alabama
Classification: 2.0

Personal Profile:  

In Beijing, Bryan Kirkland will play in his third Paralympic Games.  After reaching the mountain top with the U.S. team that won a gold medal in Sydney, the team's bronze medal finish in Athens was less than satisfying.  Kirkland said he plans on helping his team get back the gold medal they lost in 2004.

Kirkland has been playing wheelchair rugby for 16 years. Currently, he plays for Lakeshore Demolition and has been a part of five national championships with the team. In 1998, he competed at World Wheelchair Games where he medaled in three different track and field events (100, 200, 400m), and set a world record in the 200m.

Major Achievements:

•    2008:  First place - Canada Cup, Burnaby, British Columbia  
•    2008:  Second place - North American Cup, Birmingham, Alabama  
•    2007:  Nominated to 2008 U.S Paralympic Wheelchair Rugby Team
•    2006:  Gold medal - World Wheelchair Rugby Championships, Christchurch, New Zealand
•    2006:  First place - Canada Cup, Vancouver, B.C., Canada
•    2006:  First place - North American Cup, Birmingham, Ala.
•    2004:  Bronze medal - Paralympic Games, Athens, Greece
•    2003:  USQRA Athlete of the Year
•    2002:  Silver medal - IWRF World Championships
•    2000:  Gold medal - Paralympic Games, Sydney, Australia
•    1999:  Gold medal - World Wheelchair Games, Christchurch, New Zealand
•    1998:  Gold medal, 200m (WR); Silver medal, 100m; Bronze medal, 400m - World Wheelchair Games

 

Seth McBride
SETH MCBRIDE
Sport:  Wheelchair Rugby
Height:  6’0”
Weight:  152 lbs
DOB:  February 26, 1983
Birthplace:  Seattle, Washington
Current Residence:  Juneau, Alaska
Classification:  2.0

Personal Profile:  

Seth McBride will travel to the Paralympic Games in Beijing as part of the 2008 U.S. Paralympic Wheelchair Rugby Team with one goal in mind: winning gold.  This is his first Paralympic Games.

McBride has been playing rugby for five years. He spent three months living in El Salvador teaching English to local residents, and enjoys playing the harmonica.

Major Achievements:

•    2008:  First place - Canada Cup, Burnaby, British Columbia
•    2008:  Second place - North American Cup, Birmingham, Alabama
•    2007:  Nominated to 2008 U.S Paralympic Wheelchair Rugby Team
•    2006:  Gold medal - World Wheelchair Rugby Championships, Christchurch, New Zealand
•    2006:  First place - Canada Cup, Vancouver, B.C., Canada
•    2006:  First place - North American Cup, Birmingham, Ala.
•    2005:  Gold medal - World Wheelchair Games, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
•    2005:  Selected to U.S. Wheelchair Rugby Development Team

 

 

Nick Springer
NICK SPRINGER
Sport: Wheelchair Rugby
Height: 3’8”
Weight: 135 lbs
DOB: June 9, 1985
Birthplace: New York, New York
Current Residence: St. Petersburg, Florida
Classification:  2.0

Personal Profile:  

In December 2007, Nick Springer was one of 11 players nominated to the 2008 U.S. Paralympic Wheelchair Rugby Team that will compete in Beijing. His goal for the Paralympic Games is to win the gold medal.

Springer has been playing rugby for the past six years. He began playing rugby at the suggestion of a fellow sled hockey teammate. Before playing rugby, he played sled hockey for 14 years. He last played for the New York Islanders sled hockey team.

Major Achievements:

•    2008:  First place - Canada Cup, Burnaby, British Columbia
•    2008:  Second place - North American Cup, Birmingham, Alabama
•    2006:  Gold medal - World Wheelchair Rugby Championships, Christchurch, New Zealand
•    2006:  First place - Canada Cup, Vancouver, B.C., Canada
•    2006:  First place - North American Cup, Birmingham, Ala.
•    2005:  Gold medal - World Wheelchair Games, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
•    2005:  Selected to U.S. Wheelchair Rugby Development Team

 

 

Chance Sumner
CHANCE SUMNER
Sport:  Wheelchair Rugby
Height:  6’5”
Weight:  210 lbs
DOB:  January 30, 1977
Birthplace:  Colorado Springs, Colorado
Current Residence:  Lakewood, Colorado
Classification:  3.0

Personal Profile:  

Chance Sumner will make his Paralympic debut with the 2008 U.S. Wheelchair Rugby team that will compete in Beijing. He is one of five athletes on the team that will be playing in his first Paralympic Games.

Sumner, who trains and plays rugby full-time, has been playing for the past six years. He was injured in 2002 when he was thrown off a mechanical bull and incurred a C-7 burst fracture. Sumner began playing rugby after he went to buy mountain bike tires and a man at the store suggested the sport to him. He fell in love with the sport and has been playing ever since.

Major Achievements:

•    2008:  First place - Canada Cup, Burnaby, British Columbia
•    2008:  Second place - North American Cup, Birmingham, Alabama
•    2007:  Nominated to 2008 U.S. Paralympic Wheelchair Rugby Team
•    2007:  USQRA Division I National Championship, Tournament MVP, Denver Harlequins
•    2006:  Gold medal - World Wheelchair Rugby Championships, Christchurch, New Zealand
•    2006:  First place - Canada Cup, Vancouver, B.C., Canada
•    2006:  First place - North American Cup, Birmingham, Ala.
•    2005:  Gold medal - World Wheelchair Games, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
•    2005:  Selected to U.S. Wheelchair Rugby Development Team

 

 

Mark Zupan
MARK ZUPAN
Sport: Wheelchair Rugby
Height:  5’9”
Weight:  160
DOB:  May 20, 1975
Birthplace:  Cleveland, Ohio
Current Residence:  Austin, Texas
Classification:  3.0

Personal Profile:  

Mark Zupan's goal for the 2008 Paralympic Games, like many of his teammates, is to win gold. But his aspirations go one step further. He doesn't want the U.S. to simply win, but to dominate the competition in Beijing.

Zupan began playing wheelchair rugby in Atlanta in 1996 and has become a mainstay on the U.S. Paralympics Wheelchair Rugby Team over the past several years. He found rugby while in rehab. An avid contact sport enthusiast, he says wheelchair rugby was the best fit for him after his injury. He was prominently featured in the Academy Award nominated documentary "Murderball," and has become one of the team's most recognized faces.

In addition to his position at C. Faulkner Engineering, Zupan tours the country as a motivational speaker. His autobiography, "Gimp," was released in October 2006.

Major Achievements:

•    2008:  First place - Canada Cup, Burnaby, British Columbia
•    2008:  Second place - North American Cup, Birmingham, Alabama
•    2008:  U.S. Quad Rugby Association National Championship - Texas Stampede
•    2007:  Nominated to 2008 U.S. Paralympic Wheelchair Rugby Team
•    2006:  Gold medal - World Wheelchair Rugby Championships, Christchurch, New Zealand
•    2006:  First place - Canada Cup, Vancouver, B.C., Canada
•    2006:  First place - North American Cup, Birmingham, Ala.
•    2005:  USQRA Division I National Championship, Texas Stampede
•    2004:  Bronze medal - Paralympic Games, Athens, Greece
•    2004:  USQRA Wheelchair Rugby Athlete of the Year
•    2004:  USQRA Division I National Championship, Texas Stampede
•    2003:  Bronze medal - World Wheelchair Games, Christchurch, New Zealand
•    2002:  Silver medal - IWRF World Championships, Gothenburg, Sweden
•    1999:  Gold medal - World Wheelchair Games, Christchurch, New Zealand

 

 

Joel Wilmoth
JOEL WILMOTH
Sport: Wheelchair Rugby
Height:  6’3”
Weight:  225 lbs
DOB:  July 31, 1989
Birthplace:  Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania
Current Residence:  Birmingham, Alabama
Classification:  3.5

Personal Profile:  

U.S. Quad Rugby Association (USQRA) Team:  Lakeshore Demolition

At 18 years old, Joel Wilmoth is the youngest athlete ever nominated to the U.S. Paralympic Wheelchair Rugby Team. He promises to be a force for the U.S. with his size and physical play, and has been praised by head coach James Gumbert as a future star in the sport.

Wilmoth started visiting the Lakeshore Foundation simply to work out. One day, a member of the Lakeshore staff approached him and told him he should check out wheelchair rugby. Wilmoth agreed to watch a practice, but still wasn't sold. After all, he didn't use a wheelchair to get around (he is missing his feet on both legs, and has only one finger on each hand), and the game didn't look that physical. Wilmoth played football in junior high, and didn't think that rugby could provide the same feeling.

When he expressed his hesitance toward the sport, the staff encouraged him to get in a chair and try it out first-hand. Wilmoth said that when he received his first big hit and felt the resulting pain, he was sold on the game and has been playing ever since.

Wilmoth graduated from high school in 2008 and will enroll in college in 2009 to pursue a business degree. He also works as a heavy equipment operator for a construction company. When he's not in school, at work or playing rugby, Wilmoth says he likes to spend as much free time with his friends as possible.

Major Achievements:

•    2008: First place - Canada Cup, Burnaby, British Columbia
•    2008: Second place - North American Cup, Birmingham, Alabama
•    2007: Nominated to 2008 U.S. Paralympic Wheelchair Rugby Team